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DNA EVIDENCE

Learning Objectives
Upon successful completion of subject, the
student should be able to do the following:
Define what is DNA and appreciate the
importance of its analysis in crime
investigation;
Describe types of trace and biological
evidence.
Define Transfer evidence.
Explain the importance of maintaining
the integrity of physical evidence.
Describe methods used to locate
evidence at a crime scene.

Learning Objectives
Describe the importance of scene
documentation in successful case
resolution.
Enumerate priorities for collecting
biological evidence.
Define situations that require control
and reference samples to be collected.
Describe equipment used when
collecting biological evidence.
Describe procedures used to collect,
mark and package wet and dry

DEOXYRIBONUCLEIC ACID
DNA is your genetic blueprint.
You inherit it from your biological parents.
It codes for things like eye color, hair color,
stature, predisposition to some diseases and
many other human traits

SCHEMATIC REPRESENTATION

DNA OVERVIEW
FROM THE WHOLE TO THE MICROSCOPIC PARTS

Diagram of a Typical Cell from Human


Cell & Nucleus: Here we have
a diagram of a typical cell
from the human body. In this
picture you can get a sense of
where the DNA resides in the
cell as well as how it is
organized in the nucleus.
Double-stranded DNA is
organized into chromosomes.
Chromosomes are situated in
the nucleus and the membrane
bound nucleus is found in the
cell.

DNA in the Cell

Target Region for PCR

Numbers and DNA


Number of cell in human body

100 trillion

Number of Chromosomes

23 pairs

Length of DNA in each cell


Size of genome in base pairs
Length of DNA in a person
Distance from earth to sun

2 meters
3 billion base pairs
150 trillion m
150 billion m

Each person has enough DNA to go to the sun and


back 500 times!!

STEPS IN DNA ANALYSIS


1. Collection of sample
2. Documentation &
Screening
3. Extraction of DNA
4. DNA Amplification

5. Running of samples for


Visualization
6. Data Interpretation and
Report Making
7. Releasing of Report

Brief History of Forensic DNA


Typing
1988 - FBI starts DNA casework
1995 - FSS starts UK DNA
database
1998 - FBI launches CODIS
database
2001 - PNP opens DNA Lab

Applications of DNA
Analysis
Criminal Investigations matching
suspect with
evidence
Parentage Testing -- identifying
parent(s)
Historical investigations
Missing persons investigations
Mass disasters positive
identification of the deceased
Military DNA dog tag
Convicted felon DNA
databases

DNA ANALYSIS IN CRIME


INVESTIGATION
Each persons DNA is
different from every
individuals. Except
for identical twins,
DNA collected from a
crime scene can
either link a suspect
to the evidence or
eliminate a suspect,
similar to the use of
fingerprints.

Where Is DNA Contained in the


Human Body?
Blood

Semen
Skin cells

Tissue
Organ

Mucus
Perspirati
on
Fingernail
s
Urine
Feces

Brain
Saliva
Muscles
Bone
Etc

SOURCES of BIOLOGICAL SAMPLES:


Muscle tissues

Hair
Teeth

Body fluids
- blood
- semen
- saliva
- sweat
- urine

Bones

Where can DNA evidence be


found at a crime scene?
Virtually anywhere!
Investigators Instinct!

Why is DNA evidence useful


in criminal investigation?
DNA testing has
become an
established part of
criminal justice
procedures, and the
admissibility of DNA
in court is routine.

Facts on DNA
The same DNA is found in all cells
of the body.
The same DNA profile is
recovered, no matter what the
sample (cell) type.
Your DNA does not change
through your life.
Any cellular material left at a
crime scene may be a useful
source of DNA

Physical vs Biological
Evidence

Physical evidence is any


tangible object that can
connect an offender to a
crime scene. Biological
evidence, which
contains DNA, is a type
of physical evidence.
However, biological
evidence is not always
visible to the naked eye.

How is DNA evidence works?


In this example, the pattern of the evidence specimen
matches that of suspect number one.

SEARCH FOR DNA


EVIDENCE
DNA Evidence is Transfer
Evidence
DNA Evidence is Trace
Evidence.

DNA Evidence is Transfer Evidence


Evidence

Possible Location of
DNA evidence

Sources of DNA

Baseball bat or
similar weapon

Handle, end

Sweat, skin, blood

Hat, bandanna,
mask

Inside

Sweat, hair, dandruff

Facial tissue,
cotton swab

Surface area

Mucus, blood, sweat,


semen, ear wax

Dirty laundry

Surface area

Blood, sweat, semen

toothpick

Surface area

Saliva, blood

Fingernail, partial scrapings


fingernail

Blood, sweat, tissue

Through and
through bullet

Outside surface

Blood, tissue

eyeglasses

Nose or ear pieces, lens

Sweat, skin

DNA Evidence is Transfer Evidence


Evidence

Possible Location of
DNA evidence

Sources of DNA

Used cigarette

Cigarette butt

Saliva

or envelop
Stamp

Licked area

Saliva

Tape or ligature

Inside /outside surface

Skin, sweat

Bottle, can, or
glasses

Side, mouthpiece

Saliva, sweat,

Bite mark

Persons skin or clothing

saliva

Used condom

Inside/outside surface

Semen, vaginal or rectal


cells

Blanket, pillow,
sheet

Surface area

Sweat, hair, semen, urine,


saliva

tissue

cigarette butt

fingernails

Broken window

DNA Evidence is Trace


Evidence
Evidence such as hair,
fiber, body fluids, are
types of physical
evidence that is small
and transient, but
measurable. When
larger items of physical
evidence are subjected
to closer examination in
the laboratory, trace
evidence may be
detected.

DNA Evidence Collection


And
Preservation

Collection Priority
The first Priority are
trace materials and
evidence of a fragile
nature.
The second priority
would be to collect swabs
from handled items that
have been moved, are out
of place or do not belong
to the resident.
A third priority type of
evidence that may be at
the scene includes the
potentially lower-quality
biological evidence.

COLLECTION OF DNA EVIDENCE

As a general rule air dry


any sample taken. If it is in the
form of tissues, either freeze or
soak in lysis buffer solution.

If DNA evidence
is not properly
documented,
collected,
packaged, and
preserved, it will
not meet the
legal and
scientific
requirements for
admissibility in a
court of law.

- If DNA evidence is not


properly documented, its
origin can be questioned.
- If it is not properly
collected,biological activity
can be lost.
- If it is not properly
packaged, contamination
can occur.
- If it is not properly
preserved, decomposition
and deterioration can
occur.

GENERAL GUIDELINES
Degradation of biological evidence is
most commonly caused by exposure to
moisture and heat, which encourages the
growth of bacteria.
This can lead to destruction of the DNA
and the possibility of incomplete or no DNA
typing results being obtained.

CONTAMINATION OF DNA EVIDENCE


Contamination of
samples, either by
coming into
contact with each
other, or with DNA
from a person
handling the
sample, can lead to
uninterpretable
DNA results.

DNA Source Example:


Ashtray
In this example,
DNA evidence left
by the suspect
and/or the victim
could be found in
the form of
saliva, skin cells
and sweat on the
cigarette.

NA Source Example: Laundry


In this example,
DNA evidence
from both the
victim and
suspect can be
found in the form
of sweat, saliva,
blood and/or
semen

DNA Source Example:


Baseball Bat
At first glance, the
victim's DNA
evidence (hair, blood
and bone fragments)
would be found at the
tip of the baseball
bat. After further
consideration, DNA
evidence left behind
by the suspect (sweat
and skin cells) could
be found on the
handle of the bat.

Non-traditional Locations of
DNA Evidence
A threatening letter was
sent to a newspaper
editor. The FBI Lab
sampled the envelope
flap and recovered
some cells (saliva) that
were then typed for
DNA. The profile from
the envelope flap was
compared to a known
suspects profile and
was found to match.

Non-traditional Location
Example: Saliva
In 1997, two women from Florida were
victims of sexual assault and robbery. One
year later, the police developed a suspect.
Plain-clothed police officers monitored the
suspect for months looking for clues that
would build their case. During surveillance,
the officers saw the suspect spit on the
street. One of the officers grabbed a napkin
and collected the spittle. The saliva, which
contained cells, provided enough DNA
evidence to charge the man with the two
attacks.

Non-traditional Location
Example: Gunshot
A suspect in the violent robbery of a shop owner.
While the owner of the shop shot at the suspect in
self-defense, the bullet from his gun went through
the body of the assailant and lodged into a wall.
When the ballistics team evaluated the projectile,
they discovered traces of blood on its surface.
Upon DNA analysis, the blood on the projectile
recovered from the crime scene was proved to be
that of the suspect, who previously claimed he
knew nothing of the incident.

Personal protection
BIOLOGICAL MATERIALS CAN
CONTAIN PATHOGENS SUCH AS:

Hepatitis
Syphilis
TB
Gonorrhea
Measles
HIV
NOTE: Assume that all stains, wet or dry, are
infectious!

Considerations for Handling


1. Always wear latex gloves when handling biological
evidence.
2. Change gloves between handling of each item of
evidence.
3. Process biological evidence on a clean area (such as a
fresh piece of butcher paper). Use a 10 % bleach
solution to clean areas at which biological evidence will
be handled.
4. Be careful not to talk excessively over biological
evidence. Wear a mask if necessary.
5. Only work with one piece of evidence at a time.
6. Never allow items of biological evidence to come into
contact with each other.

Buccal Swab

Sterile swabs or other buccal collection devices


are rubbed against the inside cheek of the
individual's mouth to collect cells for analysis.
Procedure:
Collect oral swabs from possible suspect(s).
Collect oral swabs from victim(s).
Collect oral swabs from known references (those
with access to the scene, such as homeowners).
Do not prewet swab.
Rub dry swab on the inside of cheek until wet.
Collect at least two swabs from cheeks.
Identify item with donor's name on blood tube
or swab box.
Thoroughly air-dry the swab before packaging.

Liquid Blood Sample


Procedure
Collect in purple-topped vacuum tubes that
contain the preservative ethylenediamine
tetra acetic acid.
Identify item with donor's name on blood
tube.
Refrigerate. Do not freeze or store near high
heat (above 100 F) to prevent the glass
from fracturing.
Alert evidence officers of refrigerated
samples.

Cigarette Butts
Select only the cigarette butts that
may be of evidentiary value as a
secondary reference sample.
Insure that the cigarette butts are
thoroughly air dried before packaging.
Do NOT handle with your bare fingers.
Do NOT include the ashes.

Blood and Body Fluid


Collection
Cuttings.
Remove a
section of the
item containing
the stain using
a sterile or
clean cutting
device.

Blood and Body Fluid


Collection
Wet absorption. A sterile swab,
gauze pad or threads slightly
moistened with distilled water.
Concentrate the stain in a localized
portion of the swab or pad. When a
swab is used, the stain should be
concentrated on the tip. The collection
medium is pressed or rubbed into the
stain and allowed to air-dry.

Blood and Body Fluid


Collection
Scraping method. The sample is
scraped with a clean razor blade or
scalpel, into a clean piece of paper
that can be folded and packaged in a
paper envelope. This is a method to
be used in a controlled environment
(i.e., no wind or traffic) and where
the scrapings will not contaminate
other evidence.

Blood and Body Fluid


Collection
Tape-Lifting method. An optional
method for collecting dried blood
stains on a nonabsorbent surface is
using fingerprint tape. The
fingerprint-lifting tape may be placed
over the stain and lifted off. The stain
is transferred to the adhesive side of
the tape, which may then be secured
on a clear piece of acetate for
submission to the laboratory.

Hair and Fiber


Visual Hair and Fiber The most
common methods used to collect hair and
fiber evidence include the following
collection. On some surfaces, hairs and
fibers can be seen with the naked eye.
Through use of clean forceps and paper
(i.e., trace paper), the sample can be
removed from the surface and placed into
a clean piece of paper that can be folded
and packaged in a paper envelope.

Hair and Fiber


Tape lifting. Trace tapes are
available for the collection of
trace hair and fiber evidence.
The tape is applied to the
location of the suspected
sample, removed and packaged.

Hair and Fiber


Vacuuming. The area where the
suspected samples are located is
vacuumed and evidence is caught in a
filtered trap attached to the vacuum.
These samples are packaged in clean
trace paper for submission to the
laboratory. Vacuuming is the least
desirable collection method because
there is a risk of cross-contamination if
the equipment is not properly cleaned
between each use.

Wet Stains on Absorbent


Surfaces
Procedures for collecting wet stains on
absorbent surfaces are as follows:
Submit the entire item, if possible.
Use one or more sterile cotton swabs to
soak up the stain.
If the stain is small, concentrate the stain
on the tip of the swab.
Thoroughly air-dry the sample.
Document that the stain was found wet
and identify from where the stain

Special Situations
Procedures for collecting
wet stains on absorbent
substances are as
follows:
1. Scoop a thin layer
of soil (or sand).
2. Allow to
thoroughly air-dry.

Special Situations
For Liquid Containers:
1. Empty liquid containers by poking a
hole in the bottom to avoid liquid
contact with the mouth area.
2. Request test for both DNA and latent
fingerprints.
3. Mark aluminum cans for "Room
Temperature Storage," as cold or frozen
storage causes condensation on metal,
which may dilute biological evidence.
4. Package in bindle paper.

Wet Stains on Nonabsorbent


Surfaces
1. Use one or more sterile swabs (or
sterile gauze for larger stains) to soak up
the stain.
2. Concentrate the stain on one portion of
the tip of the swab.
3. Allow to thoroughly air-dry.
4. Collect the control sample by slightly
moistening the swab with distilled water
and rubbing an area of the surface in an
unstained region near the stain.

Dry Stains on Absorbent


Surfaces
Collection procedures for dry stains on
absorbent surfaces (examples: wood frame
and carpet) are as follows:
1. Cut out the stained area and package in
paper.
2. Collect a portion of the unstained area as
a control sample.
3. Package and label each sample
separately.

Dry Stains on Nonabsorbent


Surfaces
1. Submit the entire item, if possible.
2. Use a new or clean scalpel blade to
scrape the stains from the surface.
3. Collect the flakes onto clean paper and
fold the paper in a bindle.
4. If the stain is on wood, shave the area of
the bloodstain with a new or clean scalpel
blade.
5. Package each item separately.
6. Place sample in a labeled envelope that
provides reference information on where the
sample was collected.
7. Take a control swabbing from unstained
areas using a new sterile swab slightly

Transporting the Victim


In a sexual assault case, it
may be the responsibility of
the first responding officer
to transport the victim for a
medical examination. Prior
to being transported to the
hospital, be sure to cover
the victim with a CLEAN
blanket, CLEAN sheet or a
CLEAN paper wrap. This will
help protect any evidence
that may be located on the
victim.

Collect samples from the victim


to act as control

HANDLING OF BIOLOGICAL
EVIDENCE FOR DNA
EXAMINATION

CHAIN OF CUSTODY
Record of individuals
who have had physical
possession of
the evidence.
Note: Integrity of chain
of custody
The fewer people
handling the evidence,
the better, the lesser
chance of contamination
and a shorter chain of
custody for court
admissibility hearings.

SEAL
To maintain integrity of the
specimen; to further prove that
no tampering took placed.

MARKINGS on the

specimen
These are information to ensure that the
items can be identified by the collect
anytime in the future.
This precaution will help immeasurably
to established the credibility of the
collectors report or testimony and will
effectively avoid any suggestions that the
item has been misidentified.

Markings on Evidence during


the collection

A. Exhibits and/or Case number.

B. Initials and or signature of the collecting


officer.
C. Time and date of collection.
***It is also important to note the place or
location where the evidence was collected.

Questioned
blood stain

a. Exhibits

b. Initials and or
signature of the
collecting officer.

c. Time and date of


collection.

Integrity seal
Initial/Signat
ure of the
Collecting
Officer/who
did the
packaging

Turned-over
b y:

Received by
:

Improvise
d manner
of
Packaging

Integrity seal
(Scotch tape)

Initial/Signature
of the Collecting
Officer/who did
the packaging

Exhibit/Case
Nr.
Date of
Collection
Description of
specimen
enclosed
Other
information

GUIDELINES FOR
LETTER REQUEST

Documentation & Labeling


Documents needed:
1.Letter Request
2.Court Order
3.Chain of custody form (Ideal)

Ideal Letter request


containing all information as
to:
-brief summary of the case
-source of the specimen
-markings
-packaging

LIMITATIONS

LIMITATIONS

DNA cannot be used to:


Tell how long the suspect was at the crime
scene.
Tell how long the suspect handled an object.
Determine how long ago the cells were
deposited on the item.

LIMITATIONS
Environmental factors such as heat,
bacteria and mold can destroy DNA
evidence.

Identical twins share identical DNA.

DNA can not be used to determine WHEN


the suspect was at the crime scene.

How long does crime scene


DNA last?
If items have been stored properly, DNA
can last decades (30+ years).
Exposed to harsh environment (eg: heat,
sunlight, moisture, mold), DNA may only
last a few days or weeks.
In the laboratory: we cant tell in advance
whether or not an item will yield any DNA.
DNA can be present, but too degraded to
give a result (partial DNA profiles)

CASE STUDY
Case no.1: Paternity
Facts of the case: A wealthy old man died of natural
causes. No last will and testament was ever recorded by
him. He had one (1) legitimate child and two (2)
illegitimate children. To settle things, his three (3) closest
friends asked the services of the DNA-lab to retrieve
specimens from the old man for future references.
Question: What the purpose of asking the services of the
laboratory?
Answer: His three (3) closest friends blackmailed the
legitimate child into giving them 1/3 of the old mans
wealth or they will go public.

Php 200,000,000.00+++

Case no.2: Rape/Paternity


Facts of the case: A 16-year old girl gave birth to twins
mid 2004. She accused a wealthy old man that he was
the alleged father, but later retracted saying that he had
a previous boyfriend and was the true father of her
offspring. Nevertheless the old man still pursued for a
DNA examination.
Result: He could not be the father of the alleged children.
Question: What drove this man to have a sexual affair
with the girl?
Answer: Curiosity

Nakatikim ka na ba ng
kinse anyos?

Case no.3: Rape


Facts of the case: A 20-year old woman accused his 45-year
old neighbor of raping her. During the hearing the man
challenged the prosecutor for a DNA examination using the
vaginal swabs that was taken from the woman when she was
examined by a medico-legal officer and firmly stated in his
affidavit that he had never rape the victim.
Result: That the foreign DNA profile found in the vaginal
swab match to the DNA profile of the suspect and is now
serving his time in prison.
Question: Why was the suspect so confident in challenging
the prosecutor for a DNA examination?
Answer: The man knew that he didnt ejaculated during the
intercourse and was convinced that no DNA specimen of his
could ever be found on the swabs.

Case no.4: Murder


Facts of the case: A middle-aged woman and her lady
companion was killed in their house. The investigators then
turned to the womans boyfriend who was present at the
crime scene and submitted his t-shirt and shoes with alleged
bloodstain for DNA examination. In his sworn affidavit, he
arrived at the scene and found his girlfriend lying on the floor.
Shocked, he held onto his girlfriend before investigators
arrived and was the cause of the blood stain on his shirt and
shoes.
Result: The man was charged with double murder and was
sentenced to death.
Question: Why was he found guilty?
Answer: Results showed that the DNA profile found on his shirt
and shoes match to that of the lady companion of the woman.

Has Forensic DNA Profiling


replaced other forensic techniques?
Not all cases can be solved with DNA.
Not all cases can be solved with
fingerprinting.
The disciplines can work in synergy.
Forensic science is multidisciplinary:
pathology, biology, anthropology,
odontology, toxicology, ballistics,
fingerprints, etc.

Concentrate on what cannot


lie..The evidence
- Gil Grissom